|Carl Sturken and Evan Rogers|
Carl Sturken and Evan Rogers are New York-based songwriters and music producers who are business partners and friends. They have produced hits for Ruben Studdard, Wild Orchid, Christina Aguilera, and Rihanna's debut album. They helped build the career of Rihanna, and are the principals of her production company, SRP.
As songwriters and producers, Rogers and Sturken have achieved more than 20 Top 40 hits, twelve Top 5 hits and 6 BMI awards. Their songs have sold more than 60 million albums, both in the U.S. and around the world.
Sturken & Rogers started their careers in the New York R&B scene of the mid-1980s. They worked on the legendary Beat Street soundtrack and began to gain a reputation by producing such artists as Cheryl Lynn, Stephanie Mills and Jennifer Holiday. They then crossed over to the pop world by engineering the comeback of Donny Osmond, writing and producing the #2 smash "Soldier of Love" and the Top 10 hit "Sacred Emotion". In 1991 they became artists, and as Rythm Syndicate scored a #2 hit, "P.A.S.S.I.O.N.", as well as a Top 10 follow-up with "Hey Donna".
Following their success with Donny Osmond, they formed an R&B group called Rythm Syndicate with John Nevin, Rob Mingrino and Kevin Cloud, who all came from Connecticut. As well as providing vocals for the group, Rogers and Sturken also wrote their debut hit, "P.A.S.S.I.O.N.", which reached number 2 in the US Billboard charts in 1991. Following two unsuccessful albums and a few less successful singles Sturken and Rogers left the group to concentrate on writing and producing.
After two years of touring and promotion, Sturken & Rogers disbanded the group to resume writing and producing full-time. They wrote and/or produced 6 songs for Debbie Gibson's 1993 album "Body Mind Soul l" including US single "Losin' Myself" and the UK single "Shock Your Mama". Success came next in the UK with the Top 5 single "Power of a Woman" for Eternal. More work overseas followed, including contributions to the Brand New Heavies' platinum album Shelter. For Irish boy band stars Boyzone, they wrote and produced four songs for the group’s Where We Belong album, which entered at #1 on the UK charts. The six-time platinum album includes the Sturken & Rogers penned "All That I Need", which was a UK #1 single. The song also appears on Boyzone’s Greatest Hits package, By Request, which spent over two months at #1 and also had sales of over six million units.
In 1997 they shifted their attention stateside. The hit "(God Must Have Spent) A Little More Time on You", written and produced for teen sensations 'N Sync, was a Billboard Top 10 single, before climbing into the Billboard Country Top 5 after being covered by country recording legend Alabama. The song also received a Grammy nomination in 2000 for Best Country Collaboration by a group or duo. ‘N Sync’s debut album sold over 10 million copies in the US alone. In addition to the pop and country versions of "(God Must Have Spent) A Little More Time on You", the song was also recorded by jazz artist Kirk Whalum (Warner Bros.) for his album Unconditional, which was nominated for Best Pop Instrumental Performance at the 2002 Grammy Awards.
Sturken & Rogers also wrote and produced several songs for Christina Aguilera’s debut album. The album entered the Billboard charts at #1 and went double platinum after only three weeks, eventually totaling sales in excess of 11 million worldwide. They also branched out into the jazz world working with Dave Koz on his album The Dance. The album contains two Sturken & Rogers penned songs, including "Can’t Let You Go", co-written with Koz and featuring Luther Vandross on vocals, which went on to become a #1 hit on the Smooth Jazz chart.
The duo also had songs on 98 Degrees’ double platinum album Revelation and the multi-platinum debut albums of Jessica Simpson, Alsou, Mandy Moore and Anastacia, as well as many other collaborations with such artists as Christina Milian and Emma Bunton (aka Baby Spice).
As the 90s came to a close and teen pop died down, Sturken & Rogers changed gears once again, discovering and developing Javier, whom they signed to Capitol Records. They wrote and produced the majority of his debut album, including the hit single "Crazy".
Next to come calling was Clive Davis, who hired the team to work on Kelly Clarkson’s debut album, for which they wrote the hit single "The Trouble with Love Is", also featured in the movie Love Actually. The Davis connection continued with the American Idol project in 2004, as well as Rod Stewart’s As Time Goes By: the Great American Songbook 2 and two tracks for Ruben Studdard's double platinum debut album, Soulful.
The duo then decided to begin to build their own label, forming SRP Records in 2005. Their first signing was 16-year-old Rihanna, whom Rogers discovered while vacationing in Barbados. They brought her to Jay-Z and L. A. Reid at Def Jam Records and she was signed within hours of her audition. Rihanna’s first single "Pon de Replay", co-written and produced by Sturken & Rogers, went on to be popular worldwide, while her debut album Music of the Sun has sold over a million copies. Rihanna’s follow-up, A Girl Like Me, sold 3 million copies. Rihanna scored one of the biggest singles of the 2000s with "Umbrella". The follow-up single "Shut Up and Drive" was written and produced by Sturken & Rogers, and became a top 10 hit worldwide. The duo also had a hand in producing and writing the UK top 5 hit single Issues for girl group The Saturdays in 2008.
Most recently, Sturken & Rogers have signed four more acts to their SRP label. Shontelle – a singer/songwriter from Barbados, SRP linked with Steve Rifkind at SRC/Universal for her debut album Shontelligence, for which Sturken & Rogers penend all but two of the songs. For Shontelle's sophomore album, No Gravity, Sturken & Rogers wrote one song. They have also signed Jamaican singing group J-Status through SRP/Next Plateau, Brooklyn based rock band The Urgency, and 18-year-old jazz singer/pianist Kandace Springs from Nashville, TN. In addition, SRP has signed Javier Colon and are currently working out a co-venture with a major label to be determined.
- Official webpage for Rogers and Sturken[dead link]
- Podcasts featuring Carl Sturken and Evan Rogers speaking on writing